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CIO Success in Three Steps
Technology’s protocol is to enable the business not the other way around
By: Archie Hendryx
Nov. 13, 2012 10:00 AM
Of the many CIOs that I have had the pleasure to either work for or discuss with, one of the main concerns that constantly resonate is that of job longevity. When on average the job longevity for a CIO is between only 4-5 years and with trends showing that this is likely to shorten, it's no surprise that the role of a CIO requires instant success in minimal time and typically with minimal budget. Nearly every CEO's mandate to a CIO is for IT to be better, faster and cheaper.
With this challenge the three steps to success for any CIO are plain and obvious. They are:
While these three steps may incorporate subsidiary aspects such as demonstrating how IT best serves the business, building technological confidence to the business and making IT more effective etc. they eventually all fall under one of the three steps mentioned above.
Step 1: Eliminate risk
Step 2: Improve Cycle Times
Step 3: Reduce Cost
So it's at this point imperative to remember that a CIO should not be concerned with buying technology from different silos and vendors but instead acquiring solutions that solve business problems. Long gone are the days when it was acceptable for a CIO to proudly boast the magnitude of their data centres and the large technology growth they had accumulated in an attempt to ensure everything was fully redundant. Instead the key drivers are for simplification, standardization & consolidation. This is where the concept of VCE's Vblock is key to a CIO's success.
Infrastructure more often than not doesn't carry the same sassiness or prominence to the business as a key application such as SAP but infrastructure is in essence the heart and soul of a business - if the server or storage goes down, the application won't work which ultimately means you cannot ship and sell your product, hence why the three steps to CIO success are linked to a successful infrastructure.
How to Eliminate Risk:
This should also incorporate the de-risking of application migrations from physical to virtual platforms and more specifically key applications that the business depends on.
Moreover this means a de-risked maintenance and operational procedure for the IT environment that is pretested, prevalidated and predictable and consequently eliminates any unplanned downtime.
In the past eliminating risk in this way has resulted in countless testing and validation procedures where every minute spent testing is a minute spent not growing the business. A true converged infrastructure can immediately resolve this.
How to improve Cycle Time:
How to Reduce Cost:
Additionally with an integrated solution across the stack there's no need to manage multiple components of an infrastructure and consequently multiple failure points that preoccupy multiple silos. This encompasses a changing of the mindset of technology being a break/fix, reactive organisation where heroes are rewarded for extinguishing fires. Instead a proactive and preventive methodology that has an "always on" culture will be adopted.
By streamlining the workforce to do more with less in correlation with application teams, OpEx cost savings can quickly be achieved by redeploying money from the back end infrastructure to front office, revenue enhancing business value and productivity.
To conclude, technology's protocol is to enable the business. Ensuring success in the three aforementioned steps enables a CIO to quickly enable the business .....and it may also allow them to stay in their job that little bit longer.
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